Thursday 15 June 2017

Art Of Burning Money: SuperFi Records

If you're at all familiar with the UK's noisy DIY community you'll know about SuperFi already but in case you aren't, this spotlight should help you out. The label started back at the turn of the millennium and has pretty much remained a solo venture ever since. With nearly 100 releases to the label's name including records by Taint, Narcosis and Art Of Burning Water over the years, Kunal has managed to always keep unearthing and working with incredible bands from all over the world and cooperating with fellow DIY labels alike. This feature focuses on the recent split LP between NASDAQ & Mothertrucker, the new LP by The Death Of Money & and the not-yet released Art Of Burning Water/Famine split.

NASDAQ/Mothertrucker - A Bulletin From The Department For Transport And Finance


1. NASDAQ - Collateral (Damaged)
2. Mothertrucker - The Gateway To Khyber
3. Mothetrucker - Saved By The Belgian

This first review features the last recorded output from Manchester's favourite musical financier's NASDAQ and heavy Brummie/London instru-riff lords Mothertrucker. It was released in February via SuperFi Records with the help of Field Records and DG (Whom I can't seem to find any info at all). NASDAQ released a cd called "Dead Peasants" in 2011 (if Discogs is correct) and then another one called "AGM/Fourth Quarter Slump" about a year later. Mothertrucker's career spans about fifteen years and includes four full-lengths and a remix tape prior to this release. Both bands play instrumental music. This LP is quite limited too, more so because DHL managed to lose a number of SuperFi's copies prior to it's release.

This is my first time hearing both bands and given the extremely sensible record title, I’m hoping the music is less so. NASDAQ wastes no time in fulfilling my hopes with the heavy, doom-laden Collateral (Damaged). It’s slow and thick but it’s also got treble on it’s side. There’s post-metal flowing through the song and more than a hint of the funk of their alter ego. It’s incredibly groovy and constantly engaging throughout, with the trio retaining their power right through the song’s near-fifteen minute expanse. Just when you think things a settling down in the song’s last third, NASDAQ builds up the riffs again. Thoughtful and really easy to chill out to as well. Not something you’d expect. Mothertrucker’s menacing collage of bass-heavy noise and psychedelic atmosphere is the best sort of companion for NASDAQ’s more bliss-like tones, though both have off-kilter charm. The Gateway To Khyber sees Mothertrucker tempering their rumbling low-end with plenty of melody and restraint. I guess having a super-heavy grind band on the other side of this split just wouldn’t have worked. I’m actually glad that didn’t happen. Saved By The Belgian (brilliant title!) is every bit the meandering, weird kaleidoscope of sound I was hoping it would be, except it has structure and isn’t just a complete mindfuck. It presents you with their heaviest riffs while not straying too far from the point of listenability. I think that’s what makes this split work as well as it does. Both NASDAQ and Mothertrucker are clever bands that craft their music well. I may be late to the party for both but they’ve left an impression that’ll be hard to erase. 

You can stream and purchase the split digitally below:-

Mothertrucker -

The Death Of Money - Ghost Pains


1. New Son
2. Wherever You Are
3. Outside Emptiness
4. Hospital Bed
5. Ghost Pains
6. Running Through Dream (Feat. Jarboe)
7. Only Everything
8. Coda
9. Trust The Outsiders

And so to the band formerly known as The Death Of Her Money. The Death Of Money (as they're now called) released their newest record "Ghost Pains" earlier this year. The Welsh trio who began life in 2003/4 has released two full-lengths (three if you include the compilation of old recordings from last year) as well as various demos, EPs, singles and a split with Russian sludge/doom band Helga. This new record features guest vocals from Jarboe (of Swans fame). They've played alongside countless bands over the years including Pelican, Envy, Bossk and Manatees. 

It’s oppressively warm this evening (not something you say about Yorkshire often), still stoner/noise and wine awaits. The Death Of Money are a band I’ve always known about but never come into full contact with so I’m putting that right this evening. “Ghost Pains” opener New Son is a mix of all kinds of sounds and vibes. The mid-paced rock and chimes that provide the foundations for the screamed vocals during the early verse seem to be a odds but work well. The clean vocals provide a sinister edge as well as drama. Wherever You Are feels and indeed sounds very low-fi. I’m okay with that though as it’s also catchy in a goth-like way. Not surprising really when their sound is described as “Neurosis meets My Bloody Valentine meets Sonic Youth meets Can”. There are brief moments of atmospheric calm on “Ghost Pains” thought they usually reside at the beginning of songs, like on Outside Emptiness. The Death Of Money’s stoner groove is more than that genre tag would suggest though, being oddly psychedelic and trance-like. Cinematic post-music is becoming more and more appealing to me especially since I can’t stop spinning the new Pallbearer and Mastodon records and while this comparison may be slightly skewed, I’d include The Death Of Money is the same kind of musical bracket. Hospital Bed is bleak but also calming in it’s delivery, almost ritualistic. The title-track is a crushingly angular standout on the record. It’s not angular in a tech-metal kind of way but it’s got a jarring and unnerving guitar sound that spills over into metallic realms at certain points. The clean vocals remind me a bit of Muse too. The addition of Jarboe’s vocals on Running Through Dreams is inspired. They add another layer to the band’s music and even though the song itself is short by their terms, it’s offers welcome respite. Once again the trio’s mournful side takes over during the initially minimal Only Everything. What follows it is slow but beautiful doom. The second half of the record is definitely more left-field and Coda’s choral melodies are like listening to a gospel radio show. Last song Trust The Outsiders ventures back towards the sound that filled earlier songs but with added grunge. It’s a great song to end on and it underlines the creativity of the band. So good.

Stream and purchase "Ghost Pains" on vinyl below:-

The Death Of Money -

Famine/Art Of Burning Water - Split


1. Famine - Carnage On The Ankle Of Rice
2. Famine - Squid
3. Famine - All The Faces
4. Art Of Burning Water - Lack Of Understandment
5. Art Of Burning Water - Slapped To Death
6. Art Of Burning Water - Marisa

My last review of this feature isn't even out yet but will be in July, on 7" vinyl. It features Art Of Burning Water (the band that Kunal forms one third of) and West Yorkshire's favourite pogger/grind trio Famine. It's a collaborative release between SuperFi Records and Dead Heroes Records. The release follows AOBW's recent noise tape, while it's the first music that Famine has put out since their debut LP "Razzin'" came out in 2015. 

I better be quick with this one. Famine has always been entertaining and the Jeremy Clarkson sample at the beginning of Carnage On The Ankle Of Rice shows no end to that. Their grinding is as frenetic as ever too, with the dual screams and precise noise making full use of the short song-length. There’s groove and structure to Squid and no time at all for slow, stomping riffs or breakdowns. It’s just breakneck. All The Faces might refer to the cover art of this split, but whatever, it’s songs like this that show why they were chosen to play Obscene Extreme last year. Wicked fun. Art Of Burning Water is no different on their side, except for the low-end that kicks off Lack Of Understandment. Their’s is a cross between grind and peculiar black metal. Slapped To Death is the split’s only sub one-minute song and it’s pretty disturbing. Subtle hints of mosh adorn closing song Marisa, though not the popular sort. AOBW just seems to get darker and darker with each song on here. It’s great to hear new Famine songs on record again and Art Of Burning Water’s continual evolution gets better and better. Two of the UK’s hardest working DIY bands together can only be a good thing. 

There's a cheeky stream up via SuperFi Records below:-

Famine -
Art Of Burning Water -

SuperFi Records -

You can pick up the NASDAQ/Mothertrucker & The Death Of Money records via SuperFi Records below, where you can check for Famine/Art Of Burning Water Split pre-orders:-

NASDAQ/Mothertrucker splits can also be bought via Field Records -, while people from outside of the UK can head to Dead Heroes Records for news of pre-orders for the Famine/Art Of Burning Water split here -

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